If your parents were like mine, hundreds and hundreds of times they said, “Don’t play with your food. Just eat it!” Thinking back, I realize that the only time I didn’t want to “clean my plate” was when I was served food that I didn’t think tasted good. I’m sure my parents had “good health” intentions, but surely they could have just spared me from eating canned peaches.
To prepare the “gross” food for my consumption, I was often led to “playing” with it. The main goal was to change the taste of the food, so it swam in Vinegar River, sailed on Green Bean Ocean, plunged into the Gravy Sea and often dived into Mustard Pond. While I sat at the table alone, I always had the urge to squi-i-i-i-i-ish food between my fingers. However, that was totally out of the question, so I repressed all those childish feelings.
Now I’m all grown and I constantly play with my food to release my inner child. It is very therapeutic!
I have a totally different attitude about food. I think getting messy is relaxing, so I gnaw and lick every messy morsel and drip. I like touching my food with my hands. Sometimes, the pure deliciousness leaves me breathless. Obviously, food makes me feel happy. No, it makes me feel jubilant!
I noticed that while I was making the Smiling Sunshine Carrot Muffins, two very cool things happened with the ingredients.
It was almost…art.
The dry ingredients looked like The Grinch’s face.
I know! It is phenomenal!
(If you don’t think so, humor me.)
After I finished with the dry ingredients, I had to start another bowl with the wet ingredients. I slowly added one ingredient at a time. When all the wet ingredients had been added to the bowl, I noticed the coolest bubbles.
These bubbles look like a dinosaur neck and head…
Or a very gawdy earring.
All these bubbles look like a fish…
A fish that is swimming!
Cooking is truly an artistic, creative endeavor and if you take the time, it is highly enjoyable. So the next time your child grabs a handful of food and lets it squish through their fingers, you should give it a try and join them!
Really! Go ahead! Playing with food isn’t just for children.
You’ll be surprised at how relaxing it feels.